The Oxford Book of Modern Science Writing (Oxford Landmark Science)

ISBN : 9780199216819

Richard Dawkins
448 ページ
155 x 232 mm



  • An anthology of diverse and inspiring pieces to browse and to treasure, confirming science writing as a literary genre of its own.
  • Captures the poetry and excitement of scientific understanding and discovery from 1900 to the present day.
  • Each essay or extract has been selected and is personally introduced by Richard Dawkins, producing a collection that is as wide-ranging and intellectually substantial as it is pleasureable to read.
  • Includes extracts from the works of J.B.S. Haldane, Stephen Jay Gould, Albert Einstein, D'Arcy Thompson, Alan Turing, Richard Feynman, C.P. Snow, James Watson, Martin Rees, Steve Pinker, Jared DIamond, and Erwin Schrodinger among others.

Selected and introduced by Richard Dawkins, The Oxford Book of Modern Science Writingis a celebration of the finest writing by scientists for a wider audience - revealing that many of the best scientists have displayed as much imagination and skill with the pen as they have in the laboratory. 

This is a rich and vibrant collection that captures the poetry and excitement of communicating scientific understanding and scientific effort from 1900 to the present day. Professor Dawkins has included writing from a diverse range of scientists, some of whom need no introduction, and some of whose works have become modern classics, while others may be less familiar - but all convey the passion of great scientists writing about their science.

"A compendium of some of the most illuminating thinking of the past 100 years." - Eureka, The Times

"A feast for many long evenings." - Katie Owen, The Sunday Telegraph

"Engaging selection." - Christopher Hirst, The Independent

"Richard Dawkins has done a wonderful job." - Nicholas Lezard, Saturday Guardian

"Stunning anthology." - The Times


James Jeans, from The mysterious universe -- Martin Rees, from Just six numbers -- Peter Atkins, from Creation revisited -- Helena Cronin, from The ant and the peacock -- R.A. Fisher, from The genetical theory of natural selection -- Theodosius Dobzhansky, from Mankind evolving -- G.C. Williams, from Adaptation and natural selection -- Francis Crick, from Life itself -- Matt Ridley, from Genome -- 'Theoretical biology in the third millennium' / Sydney Brenner -- Steve Jones, from The language of the genes -- J.B.S. Haldane, from 'On being the right size' -- Mark Ridley, from The explanation of organic diversity -- 'The importance of the nervous system in the evolution of animal flight' / John Maynard Smith -- Fred Hoyle, from Man in the universe -- D'Arcy Thompson, from On growth and form -- G.G. Simpson, from The meaning of evolution -- Richard Fortey, from Trilobite! -- Colin Blakemore, from The mind machine -- Richard Gregory, from Mirrors in mind -- 'One self : a meditation on the unity of consciousness' / Nicholas Humphrey -- Steven Pinker, from The language instinct, and How the mind works -- Jared Diamond, from The rise and fall of the third chimpanzee -- David Lack, from The life of the robin -- Niko Tinbergen, from Curious naturalists -- Robert Trivers, from Social evolution -- Alister Hardy, from The open sea -- Rachel Carson, from The sea around us -- Loren Eiseley, from 'How flowers changed the world' -- Edward O. Wilson, from The diversity of life.

Arthur Eddington, from The expanding universe -- C.P. Snow, from the foreword to G.H. Hardy's A mathematician's apology -- Freeman Dyson, from Disturbing the universe -- J. Robert Oppenheimer, from 'War and the nations' -- 'A passion for crystals' / Max F. Perutz -- 'Said Ryle to Hoyle' / Barbara and George Gamow -- 'Cancer's a funny thing' / J.B.S. Haldane -- Jacob Bronowski, from The identity of man -- Peter Medawar, from 'Science and literature', 'Darwin's illness', 'The phenomenon of man', the postscript to 'Lucky Jim', and 'D'Arcy Thompson and growth and form' -- Jonathan Kingdon, from Self-made man -- Richard Leakey and Roger Lewin, from Origins reconsidered -- Donald C. Johanson and Maitland A. Edey, from Lucy -- 'Worm for a century, and all seasons' / Stephen Jay Gould -- John Tyler Bonner, from Life cycles -- Oliver Sacks, from Uncle Tungsten -- 'Seven wonders' / Lewis Thomas -- James Watson, from Avoid boring people -- Francis Crick, from What mad pursuit -- Lewis Wolpert, from The unnatural nature of science -- Julian Huxley, from Essays of a biologist -- 'Religion and science' / Albert Einstein -- Carl Sagan, from The demon-haunted world.
Richard Feynman, from The character of physical law -- Erwin Schrödinger, from What is life? -- Daniel Dennett, from Darwin's dangerous idea, and Consciousness explained -- Ernst Mayr, from The growth of biological thought -- Garrett Hardin, from 'The tragedy of the commons' -- W.D. Hamilton, from Geometry for the selfish herd, and Narrow roads of geneland -- Per Bak, from How nature works -- The fantastic combinations of John Conway's new solitaire game 'life' / Martin Gardner -- Lancelot Hogben, from Mathematics for the million -- Ian Stewart, from The miraculous jar -- Claude E. Shannon and Warren Weaver, from The mathematical theory of communication -- Alan Turing, from Computing machinery and intelligence -- Albert Einstein, from 'What is the theory of relativity?' -- George Gamow, from Mr. Tompkins -- Paul Davies, from The Goldilocks enigma -- Russell Stannard, from The time and space of Uncle Albert -- Brian Greene, from The elegant universe -- Stephen Hawking, from A brief history of time.
S. Chandrasekhar, from Truth and beauty -- G.H. Hardy, from A Mathematician's apology -- Steven Weinberg, from Dreams of a final theory -- Lee Smolin, from The life of the cosmos -- Roger Penrose, from The emperor's new mind -- Douglas Hofstadter, from Gödel, Escher, Bach : the eternal golden braid -- John Archibald Wheeler with Kenneth Ford, from Geons, black holes, and quantum foam -- David Deutsch, from The fabric of reality -- Primo Levi, from The periodic table -- Richard Fortey, from Life : an unauthorized biography -- George Gaylord Simpson, from The meaning of evolution -- Loren Eiseley, from Little men and flying saucers -- Carl Sagan, from Pale blue dot.


Richard Dawkins, Former Charles Simonyi Chair of the Public Understanding of Science, Oxford University; Fellow of New College, Oxford; Fellow of the Royal Society; and Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

Features extracts from the following writers

Peter Atkins
Per Bak
J.D. Bernal
Colin Blakemore
John Tyler Bonner
Sydney Brenner
Jacob Bronowski
Rachel Carson
Subramaniam Chandrasekhar
Francis Crick
Helena Cronin
Antonio R. Damasio
D'Arcy Thompson
Paul Davies
Daniel C. Dennett
David Deutsch
Jared Diamond
Theodosius Dobzhansky
Freeman Dyson
Sir Arthur Eddington
Maitland Edey
Albert Einstein
Loren Eiseley
Richard Feynman
R. A. Fisher
Kenneth Ford
Richard Fortey
George Gamow
Martin Gardner
S. J. Gould
Brian Greene
Richard Gregory
J. B. S. Haldane
W. D. Hamilton
Garrett Hardin
Alister Hardy
G.H. Hardy
Stephen Hawking
Douglas R. Hofstadter
Lancelot Hogben
Fred Hoyle
Nick Humphrey
Julian Huxley
James Jeans
Donald Johanson 
Steve Jones
Jonathan Kingdon
David Lack
Richard Leakey
Primo Levi
Roger Lewin
John Maynard Smith
Ernst Mayr
Peter Medawar
J. Robert Oppenheimer
Roger Penrose
Max Perutz
Steve Pinker
Martin Rees
Mark Ridley
Matt Ridley
Oliver Sacks
Carl Sagan
Erwin Schrodinger
Claude Shannon
G.G. Simpson
George Gaylord Simpson
Lee Smolin
C.P. Snow
Russell Stannard
Ian Stewart
Lewis Thomas
Niko Tinbergen
Robert Trivers
Alan Turing
James D. Watson
Warren Weaver
Steven Weinberg
John Archibald Wheeler
G.C. Williams
Edward O. Wilson
Lewis Wolpert